Holding Down the Tent When Staking Isn’t an Option

barrels staking isnt an option

When you cannot drive stakes into the ground to secure your tent in position, you have the option of following the proper steps for ballasting tents. Here are suggestions so that you are successful in your efforts.

Rental Management Magazine recently looked at the issue of ballasting tents. The article concluded that there were two primary forms of ballast that were used prevalently, with different companies advocating one or the other.

The analysis by Wayne Walley, the magazine’s editor, found that water barrels were less expensive but were not as consistently effective as concrete. Many companies have started using 55-gallon plastic barrels that were originally intended as food containers, he noted, adding that these barrels are not heavy enough to properly secure many tents.

The water barrels will often slide. They are typically connected to rope or wire at the barrel’s top, meaning that they do not provide as much stability as they otherwise would. The quantity of barrels that is needed increases, and often firms do not use enough of them to properly ballast the tent. That creates the possibility of an unsafe event.

If any clarification is needed, Walley favors concrete as a ballast.

Study on ballasting tents leads to online tool

How do you calculate the amount of ballast you need? The nonprofit Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) released a ballasting calculator in 2012 on IFAI.com. Still available today, the tool is designed based on the standards the nonprofit developed through study of this tent-stabilizing method. The code for the tool was built using a model that was engineered at Clemson University in South Carolina.

The research that formed the basis of the project looked at how well certain types of ballast worked, across a broad spectrum, when the tent was placed on diverse kinds of ground. The ballasts were gauged in terms of the coefficients for sliding (or kinetic) friction and static friction under an array of conditions. They were described in terms of numerous variables, including type of ballast, type of ground surface, angle, and the positions of the anchor (horizontal and vertical). Drag tests across a wide spectrum were conducted for each ballast type and surface type to calculate the degree to which ballast performance was (or was not) linear.

Beyond ballast to made-in-the-USA craftsmanship

If you want an event structure that has great stability, you will need more than knowing about what you need for ballasting tents and how much of it you need. You will also require quality craftsmanship in the tent’s creation if it should be trusted with the safety and comfort of your attendees. At Tent Renters Supply, we offer factory-direct prices and fast service on all our quality made-in-the-USA tents, for sale by industry. View our catalog.